The Village of Port Alice, accessible via Highway 30, is a pretty, well-kept community, located on Neroutsos Inlet, Northern Vancouver Island. Peaceful Port Alice attracts fresh-air enthusiasts craving crowd-free access to the great outdoors. Perched on a pretty hillside that provides everyone a “million dollar view” of Neroutsos Inlet, this thriving community is the most southerly access point to Quatsino Sound, the spectacularly beautiful ocean inlet that cuts deep inland and gives kayakers, scuba divers and sports fishermen access to the open Pacific.
Port Alice began in about 1917, with the building of the pulp mill, which is still the main employer, and, indeed, the reason that Port Alice exists. Neucel Specialty Cellulose employs about 400 people. The town moved to its current location in 1965, becoming British Columbia’s first “instant municipality”.
The town and many of its businesses offer various services to the always growing number of visiting tourists. The town serves as a base camp for expeditions via boat or logging road to such remote getaways as Side Bay, Gooding Cove, Harvey Cove, Brooks Peninsula and Klaskino Inlet. Public launching facilities ensure accessing the ocean is easy for travelers towing their own boats or getting out on the water with a local charter fishing or wildlife-viewing guide.
For a wilderness hiking experience, try the Marble River Trail that leads to breathtaking Bear Falls. It’s located just off the North Island Highway on Hwy 30, the newly repaved road that now provides a smooth drive to Port Alice. Also not far from town are the Link River and Spruce Bay campgrounds at Victoria and Alice lakes, both favorite spots for freshwater fishing and outdoor recreation.
Cyclists of all skill levels tackle the trails on Rumble Mountain and experienced daredevils compete in the annual Rumblefest event in June. Geology buffs are fascinated by Devil’s Bath, Disappearing River and the Eternal Fountain, all part of the vast stretches of limestone that make Vancouver Island North prime spelunking (caving) country. Also nearby is the Port Alice Golf and Country Club, a challenging nine-hole course set against glorious mountain vistas.
Visitors to Port Alice will find beautiful and modern B&B’s, vacation rental homes, a hotel and a full-service campground. Dining options include the hotel coffee shop that serves meals throughout the day, a steak-house restaurant, a RV Park with a diner, as well as laundry and shower facilities, numerous bed & breakfast operators, and several apartment/townhouses available for short-term rentals. The local grocery store has a deli counter, sporting goods and fishing licenses.
If making Port Alice your home, or second home as many do, housing is reasonable in Port Alice, with a number of single family houses currently for sale. There are also townhouse style condominiums, apartment-style condominiums, rental townhouses, rental apartments, and a mobile home park.
In the heart of the village, the Tourism & Heritage Center offers information for travelers and a well-documented look into Port Alice’s past. Enjoy its present when strolling the Seawalk, a wheelchair-accessible pathway that follows the community coastline. Have a picnic here, hike to Walk-out island when the tide is out and bring a pair of binoculars. Hundreds of species of birds visit Neroutsos Inlet throughout the year, and these same waters are home to Orca, Humpback and Grey whales, Stellar sea lions and migrating salmon.
So whether you are seeking a quiet place to relax, surrounded by majestic west coast scenery or you are a do-it-yourself adventurer, Port Alice is a community that meets your needs!
Village of Port Alice
1061 Marine Drive
Port Alice, BC V0N 2N0
Vancouver Island, Canada